Children generally start nursery the term after their third birthday, based on a three-term year.
Admissions to local authority nursery schools and classes are handled by the school. If you would like your child to attend school nursery provision you should contact the headteacher who will explain the arrangements for applying for a place.
Academies, free schools and voluntary aided schools determine their own policies for admission.
All Oxfordshire County Council-maintained nurseries (community and voluntary controlled) must follow the relevant admissions policy.
For nursery classes in schools this is set out in the admissions policy for local authority nurseries and nursery classes (pdf format, 166 Kb).
Oxfordshire also has seven freestanding nursery schools which are separately governed and not linked to one specific primary school. The admissions policy for these freestanding nursery schools is set out in the freestanding nursery school admission policy (pdf format, 177 Kb).
These nurseries are:
- The ACE Centre Nursery School
- Comper Foundation Stage School
- Grandpont Nursery School
- Headington Nursery School
- Lydalls Nursery School
- The Slade Nursery School
- Wheatley Nursery School
Free nursery education
The Early Education Fund ensures that children between the ages of three and five have access to good quality early years education. All children are entitled to 15 hours free nursery or pre-school provision a week, for at least 38 weeks a year. Working families may also be entitled to extended free childcare provision for up to 30 hours a week
Nursery and early years provider list
You can view a list of local authority early education providers by district or use the nursery school search. Contact the Family Information Service on private, voluntary or independent nurseries offering free places through NEF.